When you suffer from arthritis, pain, and stiffness in your joints can seriously interfere with your quality of life. Arthritis describes more than 200 different conditions that affect joints and the surrounding connective tissue. You may suffer from arthritis due to wear and tear, aging, inflammation, autoimmune conditions, or infection.

There are several types of arthritis, each with its own characteristics and symptoms. Here are some common types of arthritis:

  • Osteoarthritis (OA): This is the most common type of arthritis and occurs when the protective cartilage cushions the ends of bones wears down over time. It often affects weight-bearing joints such as the knees, hips, and spine.
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA): RA is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system mistakenly attacks the body's own tissues, primarily affecting the joints. It can cause inflammation, pain, stiffness, and joint deformities.
  • Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA): PsA is a type of arthritis that affects people with psoriasis, a skin condition characterized by red, scaly patches. It can cause joint pain, swelling, and stiffness, along with skin and nail changes
  • Gout: Gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis that occurs when there is a buildup of uric acid crystals in the joints. It commonly affects the big toe, causing sudden and severe pain, swelling, redness, and warmth.
  • Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS): AS is a chronic inflammatory arthritis that primarily affects the spine and sacroiliac joints in the lower back. It can cause stiffness, and pain, and eventually lead to the fusion of the vertebrae.
  • Juvenile Arthritis (JA): JA refers to several types of arthritis that occur in children and teenagers. Symptoms can vary and may include joint pain, swelling, stiffness, and fever.
  • Lupus: Lupus is an autoimmune disease that can affect various parts of the body, including the joints. Joint pain, swelling, and stiffness are common symptoms
  • Reactive Arthritis: This type of arthritis occurs as a reaction to an infection, typically in the urinary tract, intestines, or genitals. It causes joint pain, swelling, and inflammation, along with other symptoms such as fever and rash.

Regardless of the origins of your arthritis, you may think surgery is the only way to relieve pain and dysfunction. While joint replacement surgery can successfully restore function, it isn’t your only option. Read on to learn how you can alleviate pain without going under the knife.


A healthy diet goes a long way in reducing the inflammation that can ease arthritis pain. Eat mostly whole, plant-based foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals. Focus on leafy greens, color-rich fruits, whole grains, lean proteins, and unsaturated fats that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

These foods support a healthy immune system and can contribute to reduced fluid retention and better blood flow. Plus, when eaten in moderate quantities, these foods support a healthy weight, which reduces pressure on arthritic joints.

Exercise and physical therapy

Physical therapy can help restore function and strengthen the muscles surrounding joints affected by arthritis, so the joint itself has less of a burden when you move. There are specific exercises that Barrington Orthopedic Specialists can recommend to improve your range of motion and enhance your posture. Strong joints feel better, even when affected by arthritis.

Regular exercise improves circulation and discourages stiffness, which can accelerate arthritis pain. Doing something as simple as taking a daily walk goes a long way to reduce pain. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio weekly to reap the benefits.


The team at Barrington Orthopedic Specialists offers various injections to help alleviate arthritis pain without surgery. These include anti-inflammatory drugs like cortisone and hyaluronic acid. A hyaluronic acid injection mimics a substance that occurs naturally in your joints and acts as a lubricant to promote ease of movement.

Hot and Cold Therapy

Self-application of ice for about 20 minutes every hour following vigorous activity can help ease pain, inflammation, and swelling by constricting blood vessels. Heat, when applied during a surge of arthritis pain, increases circulation to the pained region. Apply it 2-3 times per day using a hot pack or heating pad for 15 minutes at a time.


Compressive support at the affected joint can help alleviate painful joints and encourage greater function. Braces are particularly helpful for arthritic knees but may also support elbows and ankles affected by arthritis.


Over-the-counter medications and, in some cases, prescription medications go a long way to treat pain and swelling. Antirheumatic drugs can help ease the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, while stronger prescription pain medications can provide you enough relief to do your daily activities and get restful sleep at night.

Weight Loss

Excess weight puts additional strain on the joints and can worsen arthritis pain. Losing weight can reduce the pressure on your joints, particularly in weight-bearing areas like the knees. 

Incorporate regular exercise and follow a balanced diet, with a focus on plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, while minimizing processed foods, red meat, saturated fats, sugar, and salt

Stress Reduction

Chronic pain can lead to increased stress and anxiety, which can intensify arthritis pain. Engaging in relaxation techniques such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, yoga, or mindfulness practices can help calm the mind, reduce stress, and manage arthritis pain more effectively.

Platelet-rich plasma 

PRP therapy involves using a concentrated solution of your own platelets to reduce inflammation and promote healing. The high concentration of platelets in the plasma helps modulate inflammation, stimulate tissue repair, and attract stem cells to the site of pain. 

PRP therapy is gaining recognition as a non-surgical treatment option for certain types of arthritis.

What Are The Proven Complementary Therapies?

Here is a list of proven complementary therapies:

  • Acupuncture
  • Massage Therapy
  • Mindfulness Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Tai Chi
  • Herbal Remedies
  • Aromatherapy
  • Chiropractic Care
  • Meditative Movement Practices (e.g., qigong, reiki)
  • Music Therapy
  • Hypnosis or Hypnotherapy
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT):
  • Biofeedback
  • Psychotherapy

Trust Barrington Orthopedic Specialists for Expert Arthritis Care

If none of these nonsurgical treatments work and your pain becomes unbearable, you might consider joint replacement surgery. The long-term benefits of the surgery may outweigh your suffering. If you do need to consider surgery, trust the team atBarrington Orthopedic Specialists to provide you with the best care possible.

AtBarrington Orthopedic Specialists,we have a team of experts dedicated to providing the highest quality care for arthritis patients. Ourspecialists have a wealth of knowledge and experience in managing arthritis pain and tailoring treatment plans to meet individual needs. With our personalized approach and comprehensive range of non-surgical treatments, we strive to help our patients achieve optimal relief and regain their quality of life.

If you're seeking effective arthritis pain relief and long-term management, don't hesitate toschedule a consultation withBarrington Orthopedic Specialists today. Ourcompassionate team is ready to evaluate your condition, discuss your non-surgical treatment options, and guide you toward the best course of action. 

Take the first step towards a pain-free life by contacting us now.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can changes in weather affect arthritis symptoms?

Many people with arthritis report that their symptoms worsen with changes in weather, especially during cold, damp days. However, scientific evidence on the direct impact of weather on arthritis is inconclusive.

Are essential oils effective in managing arthritis pain?

Some essential oils, like eucalyptus and ginger, may offer temporary arthritis pain relief due to their anti-inflammatory properties. However, they should be used as a complementary treatment, not as a medical therapy replacement.

Can physical therapy help manage arthritis pain?

Physical therapy can be an effective way to manage arthritis pain. It can enhance joint mobility, improve muscle strength, and promote overall fitness, which can in turn alleviate arthritis symptoms. It's important to work with a trained physical therapist to ensure the exercises are performed correctly and safely.

How do painful joints affect connective tissues?

Persistent inflammation in a painful joint can cause damage to the connective tissues surrounding the joint, such as cartilage and ligaments. This can lead to further discomfort and potentially limit mobility in the affected joint.

Can joint fluid help alleviate discomfort in arthritic joints?

Joint fluid, also known as synovial fluid, acts as a lubricant for the joints and helps to reduce friction between bones. In some cases of arthritis, this fluid may become thinner or less effective, leading to more discomfort in the affected joint.